THE managing director of a five-star North-East hotel and spa resort has stepped down.

Nick Holmes has left his position at Rockliffe Hall, in Hurworth, near Darlington, after six years.

The Northern Echo understands Mr Holmes is moving on to a new job.

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Bosses have confirmed his wife, Liz, will continue in her role as Rockliffe Hall’s spa director.

Mr Holmes won great recognition during his tenure, including an induction into The Master Innholders, one of the hospitality industry’s most exclusive bodies, which is limited to top hoteliers.

Last year, he oversaw Rockliffe’s golf resort host the English Senior Open, which is one of Europe’s best-known golf tournaments.

He said: “After six fantastic years and with some sadness, my tenure as managing director has reached its natural conclusion.

“When I accepted the post back in 2008, my primary task was to lead the opening and establishment of Rockliffe to help create one of the country’s premium five-star resorts.

“I’m proud to say that, with the magnificent team I’ve had the privilege of helping to build and lead, this has been mostly achieved and I must now move on to fresh challenges available.

“I want to thank each and every team member past and present who have contributed to our success.

“Without doubt we have created a major force within the industry.

“I must also thank chairman Warwick Brindle and owner Steve Gibson for the opportunity of leading this dream project and who have always been entirely supportive of me and our shared vision.

“We certainly part as friends and on extremely positive terms.

“I’m sure this is only the beginning for Rockliffe Hall and it can only go from strength to strength.”